Primate Trekking Tours in Nyungwe Forest National Park: Rwanda is most renowned for its gorillas in Volcanoes National Park, but it also has chimpanzees and a wide range of monkeys, including colobus, golden, L’Hoest’s, owl faced, Dent’s, blue, and vervet monkeys, as well as olive baboons and the nocturnal potto and bush babies.
Chimpanzees may be found in Nyungwe National Park in Rwanda and, to a lesser extent, Gishwati Forest. Chimpanzees are social animals who live in large groups and spend their days searching for food and killing smaller mammals. Every night, they construct new nests in the trees. Chimps are frequently heard before they are seen, with their vocalizations resonating through the forest as they associate with one another.
Primate tracking is the most popular activity in Nyungwe Forest National Park. There are over 1000 people living in the national park, with approximately 60 habituated persons in Nyungwe forest alone and 30 habituated individuals in Cyamudongo woods, which is next to Nyungwe forest.
The tracking of primates in Rwanda’s Nyungwe forest national park begins at 5:30 a.m. and ends at 2 p.m. Visitors who wish to follow monkeys in Nyungwe National Park are first instructed by the park’s head ranger. Following that, guests are divided into hiking groups of no more than six people.
The path through the deep woodland may be steep, muddy, and treacherous. A certain degree of fitness, as well as appropriate footwear, are required. Permits can be obtained online, in person at an RDB office, or through a tour operator.
Colobus monkeys are a unique supergroup in Nyungwe forest, identifiable by their black and white color and long hair, making them a wildlife photographer’s fantasy. At Nyungwe National Park, you may also see owl-faced monkeys with beak-like noses, Dent’s monkeys, blue monkeys, and vervets. L’Hoest’s monkeys can only be found in the Albertine Rift’s Nyungwe and Gishwati Forests. They are black with a white beard and dwell in tiny groups led by females and one male.
Travelers should carry a packed lunch and plenty of water when going monkey tracking at Nyungwe Forest National Park. Following a tutorial on the regulations and expectations for chimp trekking, visitors are divided into eight groups and then meet the park guides as they proceed into the bush. Because chimpanzees tend to roam from one site to another in search of food, primate tracking can take anywhere from 2 to 6 hours, depending on the location of the chimpanzees.
You will get to spend an hour with the chimpanzee families in their natural habitat, catching moments, taking photographs, watching the chimpanzees play in the trees, eating, mothers breastfeeding and nursing their young, and so on.
Primate trekking tours are a popular hobby in Rwanda because chimpanzees are more joyful, lively, noisy, mobile, and playful than mountain gorillas. On your chimp trekking adventure, you will see chimps playing and leaping in the treetops, traveling long distances in search of food, fighting among themselves, and engaging in a range of other activities.
During your primate trekking tour in Rwanda’s Nyungwe forest national park, you will be able to see chimpanzees, L’Hoest’s monkeys, vervet monkeys, red tailed monkeys, Rwenzori black and white colobus, and various bird species such as yellow eyed black flycatcher, Rwenzori Batis, Rwenzori Apalis, purple breasted sunbird, and others, making your chimpanzee trekking tour enjoyable and rewarding.
How to book your Primate Trekking Tours in Nyungwe Forest National Park?
A primate trekking permit in Nyungwe forest national park may be obtained by emailing or contacting the Rwanda Development Board (RDB), a tourist agency in Rwanda. Contact a reliable tour company, such as Explore Rwanda Tours, to book a primate tracking permit in Nyungwe national park on your behalf. Contacting us is the best choice since we will spare you the trouble of booking a chimpanzee trekking permit.
When you book a trip through a reputable tour operator, such as Explore Rwanda Tours, you will contact us with the dates, month, and year you want to trek with the chimpanzees, and we will confirm permit availability. When chimpanzee trekking permits become available, you will be asked to put down a deposit and send scanned passport details to reserve a permit.
We will secure chimpanzee trekking authorization for you and email you scanned copies of the permit as confirmation as the money is received. To prevent disappointment, chimpanzee trekking permits in the national park should be bought well in advance of the expedition date, since they are limited and competitive, selling out rapidly.
When is the best time for primate trekking tours in Nyungwe Forest National Park?
In Nyungwe Forest National Park, primate monitoring is possible at any time of year, although the optimum time is during the wet/rainy season, also known as the low season, which runs from March to May and October to November. The rainy season is perfect for chimp trekking since there will be lots of fruits and food for the chimps, limiting their movements and making it easier to identify them. The wet season is especially ideal for bird watching at Nyungwe Forest National Park.
During the dry season, also known as the peak season, which lasts from June to September and December to February, there is less rainfall in the forest, forcing chimps to wander deeper into the forest in search of food, making climbing more difficult. The dry season, on the other hand, is ideal for canopy and wildlife expeditions in the national park.
How to get to Nyungwe Forest National Park?
The national park is accessible by road or air. The national park is located in Rwanda’s southwest, in the Butare district near Cyangugu town. The 225-kilometer travel from Kigali to Nyungwe takes around 4-5 hours. Visitors who come to the park on their own can rent a car or take a bus to the park’s visitor centers at Uwinka Center or Gisakura.
Kigali International Airport also has direct flights to the park. Domestic flights from Kigali to Kamembe International Airport, which serves the Rwandan cities of Kamembe and Cyangugu, are available. The distance between Kamembe airport and Nyungwe National Park is 32 kilometers. Visitors on a tighter budget can lease a helicopter and fly to the park.